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Daniela Feroleto attempting Rhino, Rocklands
Photo by Mauro Calibani
Mauro Calibani at Rocklands
Photo by archivio Mauro Calibani
Giovanna Pozzoli, under the watchful eye of Daniela Feroleto
Photo by Tommaso Viganò
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Mauro Calibani & Co at Rocklands

13.12.2013 by Mauro Calibani

The vertical-story of a Mauro Calibani's latest climbing trip to Rocklands, South Africa.

Attention: the text will be somewhat more comprehensible after you're seen the video!



After having collected our luggage, tired after many hours on the plane, Simo, Gio', Tommy, Dani and I hugged each other goodbye and the, beneath the late August sun, Dani and I got into the van, turned it south, and drove away from Milan Malpensa back toAscoli. And this is how yet another trip came to an end

Yeah, right, but where? Where? Rocchelend? Rocchelend, the most beautiful place in the world, don't you know? It's always been described by many as "Rocchelend, the place where rock is made of melted chocolate and orange."

Right, so what should I do? You only live once, so I too need to add to the list of places I've been to, I too need to get photos taken of myself, just like those who always seem to have beautiful photos. Yeah, you know what, I'll go there too... Damn right I will!

So Daniela and I (more her than me actually do, because if you wait for me then the holidays are over even before they begin...) get a bunch of friends together consisting of Simone Raina, Giovanna Pozzoli, Tomaso Vigano' and the two of us.

We buy the tickets, (ie Dani does, because if you wait for me then the plane'll be on its way back while I'm still pondering about where to go...) and finally off we go.

As it turns out down there it was truly magnificent oh yes: the rocks really did seem to be made of melted chocolate, but one that has been heated in the sun and then hardened. Hoards of climbers clinging to the boulders everywhere, there were even some famous strong ones, some didn't even say hello, even if you did, as if they didn't hear you but hey, they strong and famous so there!

One day I met a strong Russian, I looked at him smiling and said "ciao", he didn't even say hello and looked at me strangely, perhaps he hadn't heard me... So I said it again, and he, not a fu...! So I came to the conclusion that perhaps he thought I was obnoxious, but at the end of one day I saw him climbing an 8A put up by Fred Nicole and so I forgave him.

Then there was another strong one, a Slovenian, who spoke to Fischhuber but pretended I didn't even exist and when he walked it looked like he had a broom behind his... And instead, what a bore, those who weren't famous were always kind, always said hello but were all over the place at Rocchelends, the most beautiful place in the world to go bbbuldering.

For love and to flee from the crowdy, most popular areas I set off in search of some hidden corners, to remember my principle that goes as follows: the others get the most beautiful boulders while I still have plenty of fun on those the others haven't seen. And so, somewhat peckish for something new, I began to hunt for new boulders here and there, having fun looking for them in the areas which are already saturated, there where the strongest, the locals, or just the passer bys have already climbed beautiful problems... But not those!

I've tracked down three super problems..., looking around a bit, here and there... :

"Benjy Carwash", when I climbed it, below the roof I swung out just as the cameras turned on, and when I exited the sky turned red, and it was beautiful to be up there among all that red.

Then there was "Domenico Modugno", which was actually a route with a rope and Friend, but if you fell from the summit I reckon you'd hurt yourself because you'd hit the rocks and then continue "flying" onto the terrace below... But man it was beauuutiful... all colorful, full of colorful words in the sky and even my clothes were colorful, it seemed just like when you open a box of crayons...

Finally, there was " ergio Leone", a superb problem that traversed slightly and it was so high that up on top it was colder than down below, and behind me when I sent it the words came up, gigantically, like in a film.

A special thanks goes to Simon just who with his strength, at times, gave me that extra bit of power to make me send problems I otherwise couldn't have done...

But a word of advice about Rocchelend; beware of the elephants... At times, after having watched you climb endlessly up the rocks they to want to try and mantle... ;-)

by Mauro Calibani

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